Lake Wanaka, New Zealand

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Lake Wanaka, New Zealand

Event Guide

The world’s most scenic triathlon

Welcome to the world’s most scenic triathlon (113km), set against the lake and mountain backdrop of Mount Aspiring National Park in New Zealand’s South Island.

Described by athletes as one of the best events on the international circuit, Challenge Wanaka’s terrain, remoteness and honesty of the course makes it one of the most memorable. The physical and mental challenges will push athletes to their limits but the enthusiasm and warm Kiwi welcome of the local supporters is second to none with the resulting atmosphere getting even the most tired competitor across the line.

Challenge Wanaka is the flagship event of a multi-day triathlon festival that celebrates the world’s #1 fastest-growing sport. In addition, there’s the Puzzling World Junior Challenge Wanaka and Swim the Course for those wanting to get a taste of the atmosphere in the days before the main event.

As an athlete it is essential you are prepared for this very special event. It is a half iron distance race with an ‘adventure edge’ and there are several compulsory elements that you may not encounter at other events. Our aim is to deliver an experience at Challenge Wanaka that is both safe and memorable for you. We can’t do much about the sore muscles and joints as you run up the finish chute, but we will ensure you are safe on the course at all times.

The weather in Lake Wanaka in February is stunning, and an average day is 26-28 C with clear blue skies and light winds. It is however an alpine environment so athletes must be prepared for all eventualities.

2018 Race Manuals can be found on the Challenge Wanaka and Challenge Wanaka Half pages

Road closures can be found here

For a detailed description of the course click here or download the course maps below.


2018 Course Maps (Full Distance)

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2018 Course Maps (Half Distance)

Half Swim Map 17 screen-shot-2016-12-08-at-16-32-24 Half Run Map 17



Event registration takes place at the Race Central Marquee on Pembroke Park. Times can be found in the Event Timetable.


What to bring

Please bring some photo identification – you will not be able to register without it. Passport or drivers licence is preferable.

To compete in Challenge Wanaka we require a signed acceptance of the Terms & Conditions of competing in the event. This will need to be completed at registration by every athlete.


What else to expect

Every individual competitor will be weighed at registration and have their weight recorded by the medical team.

To ensure maximum equipment safety during Challenge Wanaka, only registered competitors may access secure areas to collect gear bags, bikes etc. If you are unable to collect your gear post race your support person must bring your wrist band and race number to the Transition area and check in with security.

You will receive your race pack, information, sponsors gifts, transition bags and special needs bags.

Extra tickets for the Pasta Party and Awards Brunch will be on sale at the Registration on a ‘first-come-first-served’ basis (we expect to sell out of tickets so please be quick, or pre order them when you enter).